What Are the Most Common Defenses Against Criminal Charges?

New California Prostitution LawWhile every criminal defendant’s case is specific to that person and situation, there are a few common defenses against criminal charges that have proven effective in helping prevent the prosecution from proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

Common Defenses Against Criminal Charges

Defenses against criminal charges fall into two main categories. The first is for defendants who claim that they did not commit the crime they are charged with committing. The most common defenses used in this situation include:

  • Reasonable doubt – This defense involves making sure judge and jury know that the burden of proof in criminal cases is very high and that the prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant committed the crime. This means that just thinking that the defendant committed the crime is not enough. There must be proof for a conviction.
  • Alibi defense – Using this defense requires evidence that the defendant was somewhere else other than the scene of the crime when the crime was committed.
  • Innocent until proven guilty – People accused of crimes are presumed innocent until prove guilty. Therefore, this defense mainly involves remaining silent, not presenting any witnesses and then arguing that the prosecution did not prove that the defendant was guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

The other main category of defenses against criminal charges is for defendants who admit they did it. The main defenses in this case include claiming self-defense, the insanity defense and claiming the defendant was under the influence. We will go into more detail about these criminal defense strategies in our next blog post.

The California criminal defense attorneys at Hammerschmidt have successfully brought more than 350 cases to trial in state and federal court. If you are facing criminal charges, call us now to set up a free case evaluation.